(not so) frugal Friday

Our graduatesOh, I’ve had a busy week!  This weekend Jared graduates from college (computer science major), and next weekend Lidya graduates from high school.  So we’re planning a party for both of them along with some friends who are also graduating.  We’re also finishing our school year and trying to get in the groove of a summer schedule.  The teens are complaining bitterly about having to get up at 10 during the week.  Nevermind that it’s 3 hours later than during the school year, and that they can sleep later on Saturdays. Sigh.

So. frugality.  This week was far from a roaring success.  In fact, I think I have more fails than successes to report.  I find that the busier I am, the less success I have at saving money.

  • We packed lunches to eat in the park with our homeschool group, but then stopped for chocolate shakes to augment the picnic.
  • I bought cheese and meat for the party trays this weekend at the lowest prices I could find, and I’m putting together the trays myself, so that will save on party costs.  But when the kids and I were decorating at church over lunch, we got hungry and grabbed Panda Express.
  • We resisted the urge to install the swamp cooler in the living room even though it was warm this week, but soon we will need to break down and do it.  It is warm!
  • We are scraping up the last of the hay on the floor of the hay barn to feed the cows, to help give our pastures more time to grow up.  (We have three different pastures that we rotate the cows through, but this year we are feeding 2 full-grown cows, so the 1.5 acres of grass is going down quick.) Thankfully there’s been a lot of rain so the pastures are growing pretty well.
  • John turned a small patch of grass alongside our garage into more pasture, which gave them a few more days of eating, and a 4th pasture to rotate through.  But the fence for that project was $80.
  • I did some shopping at Cash ‘n Carry which I don’t always take the time to do.  But they have some decent prices, including hamburger for $2.39/lb (in 10 lb rolls) which is about as good as I’ve seen lately.

What about you?  How did your week go?

 

{ 7 Comments }

  1. I love these posts- encourages me to be frugal. We discovered this week that we have had wild blackberries in our yard and growing in the public access areas of our subdivision. Hope to pick a pint or two this weekend if the birds don’t get them first.

  2. Christine says:

    Congratulations on the graduations. How exciting!
    My not frugal choices including stopping for a few iced coffees after work.
    My frugal choices include not ordering out for lunch at work today and putting tons of effort into our menu and food choices. I bought ground beef for $2.99. It is the cheapest you can get it in MA. I made burgers for two meals and precooked and froze the rest. That $20.00 of ground beef will make us a lot of meals. I have been reaching into the pantry every time we need something. I pack four lunches a day for everyone to go to school and work. That is a lot of food. I have been trying to limit prepackaged stuff and focus on fruits and vegetables for snacks. I have been making a lot from scratch including muffins, hummus, and yogurt. I also stocked up on cereal for $1.00 a box.

  3. Umm Muhammad says:

    Yes, weeks with special occasions are not weeks for tight budgeting! Also, I would love to own a cow and chickens.

    Frugal : Only bought 1 chicken this week, no other meat. Made sweet potato, potato, carrot, and red lentil chicken broth soup from the bones and stir-fry w/lots of veggies from the meat.
    Also, learned how to make an amazing chocolate cheesecake from local labneh instead of expensive imported cream cheese. It was so, so delicious and a fraction of the calories and fat, and high in protein! It was very exciting.
    Also, walked with the kids to a local shawarma place and only ended up spending the equivalent of $3. Now that’s cheap eats!

    Not so frugal : I threw away some leftovers that I had forgotten about in the fridge. Also, we went out to eat at a Yemeni restaurant and brought the leftovers home and I left them in the baby stroller and they went bad. :(

  4. Frugal: bought a gallon of milk that was close to sell buy date so marked down to only $0.97.
    Not frugal: I planned to make yogurt with the milk but instead we made (and drank) enormous amounts of chocolate milk. It used up most of the bottle of chocolate syrup. It surely did taste yummy, though!

    Frugal: I’ve gone over budget on groceries for the past two months. I’ve been super-strict this month, and have now gotten the YTD average back on track. Now I just have to keep it there.

    Not frugal: I was at the mall to return something and made the mistake of stopping to smell the candles at Yankee Candle. They had a sale… and now I have two new candles. One of them is burning away right now and it might be a new favorite scent.

  5. While on a four-day trip away found many ways to save money.
    First off we stayed at a family owned motel for $70 a night for a suite with kitcheonette and are we ever glad we did–will be returning there again. We used the kitcheonette for half the meals and ate the other half out- the local economy needs us to buy. And when we do eat out- two of the three share a meal and ALWAYS drink free water.
    Our fun activities were all free from hiking to wading in the lake (very cold though) and playing and grilling in the playgrounds. And while hiking brought along peanut butter crackers, bottled water, acai berries, and pieces of cooked bacon.
    Visited the local shops purchasing small items from 10 mason jars to store beans for $1 a piece, hand carved wood frames with kids’ names on them for $2 a piece, vinegarette curaf for $2, girls found 4 summer dresses and 3 pairs shorts at thrift store for $2, and local library books for 10 cents a piece.
    For the long drive home bought crabsticks, acai berries, crackers, and bottled water from the local grocery saving tons of money purchasing from convenience stores.
    My one non-frugal for the vacation was to splurge and purchase liver and onions when we went for lupper one day. It was well worth it.

  6. Quaker meeting house spring festival last weekend yielded some treasures and some much needed items.
    The needed items:
    *a tower fan for our house so we can keep the A/V a few degrees warmer
    *an air pump NIB which we have been wanting since our air compressor died a few years ago. Much needed for blowing up pool accessories!
    *a fan for my office at my P/T job. It gets so stuffy and the controls are for the whole building so we have no way to change temperature.
    *a NIB garden arch to grow a grapevine on though it will probably only have morning glories on it this year.
    I also got a bag full of books and cds, some school supplies for my mission trip, a sweater set and a v-neck open weave sweater in one of my favorite colors and a really fun skirt! All for $30 and the great thing is all the money was donated to an after school program for at risk kids!

  7. Quaker meeting house spring festival last weekend yielded some treasures and some much needed items.
    The needed items:
    *a tower fan for our house so we can keep the A/V a few degrees warmer
    *an air pump NIB which we have been wanting since our air compressor died a few years ago. Much needed for blowing up pool accessories!
    *a fan for my office at my P/T job. It gets so stuffy and the controls are for the whole building so we have no way to change temperature.
    *a NIB garden arch to grow a grapevine on though it will probably only have morning glories on it this year.
    I also got a bag full of books and cds, some school supplies for my mission trip, a sweater set and a v-neck open weave sweater in one of my favorite colors and a really fun skirt! All for $30 and the great thing is all the money was donated to an after school program for at risk kids!

    This past week I also made 3 quarts of cold brewed coffee concentrate so I can have my iced coffee lattés for pennies. I also shared a jar of it with my neighbor.

    Another neighbor shared her lettuce crop with us so a few meals of free salad greens.

    Had to go to a mission team dinner and take a dessert. Determined to use what was on hand I made a key lime pie and pretzel cookies that used up the last of the peanut butter melts , some pretzels that were on the cusp of stale and m&ma bought on post Easter sale at Aldis. Only thing I needed to buy was whipped cream.

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